Profitt Report: Redwood Steakhouse and Brewery celebrates 20 years
You’ll find breweries all over Michigan, each with their own individual flair and specialty. One Genesee County brewing company is celebrating 20 years in business.
The Redwood Steakhouse and Brewery in Mundy Township has two things going for it: it’s a restaurant and they make their own beer.
For years, it was known as the Redwood Lodge.
“We’ve changed the name about three years ago to the Redwood Steak House, the Redwood Lodge, people were calling up and asking if we had rooms for rent,” said Luis Fernandes, executive chef.
“We’re predominately a steak house but we also put in, about three years ago, a sushi bar,” he said, “we do a lot of pizzas out of our wood burning oven.”
And of course, they make their own beer.
“You’re going to get the freshest beer you can get right here, right now, that's what we like,” said Konrad Connor, head brewer at Redwood.
For Connor, it’s not just a job: it’s a passion. Connor was a home brewer for years, working as a computer programmer. Then, his job was outsourced not once, but twice.
“I lost my job the second time, I stopped in here for a beer on the way home and they're like, ‘we could use a guy part time!’ So I mean, that's how I ended up here,” he said.
From IT to IPA, he’s got something for every palate.
“They range anywhere from our light beer to our very hoppy IPA, we also have a porter and a stout on all the time,” Connor said.
Connor also uses as many local products as possible in his beer: they get their wheat and hops from Michigan farmers.
Beer is big now, but it wasn’t always that way in Michigan, Connor explained.
“In the late 90s we had about a hundred brewers, we got knocked down to about 60, now we're skyrocketing,” he said, “by the end of this year we’ll close to 300 that are open.”
So what’s helped them carve out a place in Michigan’s beer landscape?
“It’s such a highly competitive world, the internet tech has to be there. People are looking for information so fast and that's what I tell a lot of people when they come into the business,” Fernandes said.
And a love for their craft.
“The best thing we can have, I think, is a brewery on every corner so you're getting the freshest beer you can get,” Connor said.
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